Cranes’ Onyango stands out in Africa’s best XI

For many years to come, Denis Onyango will not have to say much to introduce himself.
Unlike other Ugandan footballers, his stellar career will save him the words. That will be easy after the Mamelodi Sundowns goal keeper made it to FifPro Africa’s Best XI for the third year in a row.
Onyango received the prize for the best shot-stopper on the continent at the Aiteo Caf Awards that were held in Dakar, Senegal on Tuesday night.

Cranes’ Onyango stands out in Africa’s best XI
The Uganda Cranes captain was the only Africa-based player in the FifPro Best XI chosen by 500 players from 27 countries.
He was in company of Fufa president Moses Magogo, CEO Edgar Watson and Cranes coach Desabre Sebastien who had sat with fellow Frenchman and Coach of the Year winner Herve Renard of Morocco.
Onyango, who kept four clean sheets as the Cranes qualified for the 2019 Africa Cup of Nations, is in goal in a team that has Ivorians Serge Aurier and Eric Bailly, Moroccan Medhi Benatia and Senegalese Khalidou Coulibaly in defence.
Malian Naby Keita of Liverpool FC, Altetico Madrid’s Ghanaian Thomas Partey and Manchester City’s Algerian Riyad Mahrez make the midfield.
Then at the front is Liverpool’s pairing of Senegalese Sadio Mane and Egyptian Mohamed Salah. It is completed by Gabonese forward Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.
Salah beat Mane and Aubameyang to take home the Male Player of the Year honour for the second year in a row.

Cranes’ Onyango stands out in Africa’s best XI
The Egyptian deserves the award having broken the Premier League record for most goals in a 38-game season as well as becoming the African player with most goals in a single Uefa Champions League season as Liverpool reached the final.
Meanwhile, Mauritania beat the Cranes and Madagascar to the Caf Men’s Team of the Year Award.
Also, Derrick Nsibambi’s bicycle kick for consolation goal against Zambia in the Chan group stages last year was nominated but eventual Women’s Player of the Year Thembi Kgatlana’s effort for Banyana Banyana was counted for the Goal of the Year.

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Male Player of the Year: Mohamed Salah (Egypt & Liverpool)
Women’s Player of the Year: Chrestinah Thembi Kgatlana (South Africa & Houston Dash)
Youth Player of the Year: Achraf Hakimi (Morocco & Borussia Dortmunmd)
Men’s Coach of the Year: Herve Renard (Morocco)
Women’s Coach of the Year: Desiree Ellis (South Africa)
Men’s National Team of the Year: Mauritania
Women’s National Team of the Year: Nigeria
Platinum Award: His Excellency Macky Sall (President of the Republic of Senegal)
Federation President of the Year: Fouzi Lekjaa
Goal of the Year: Chrestinah Thembi Kgatlana (South Africa & Houston Dash)

Cranes’ Onyango stands out in Africa’s best XI


Full Name: Denis Masinde Onyango
Home Village: Busia
Height: 6ft 2in
Early career: Sharing, Nsambya


Years - Team

2004 - 2005: SC Villa      
2005 - 2006: St. George SA
2006 - 2010: Supersport United   
2011 - 2013: Mamelodi Sundowns
2013 - 2014: Bidvest Wits
2014 - To date: Mamelodi Sundowns

2016 Caf Champions League winner
2016 Africa Player of the Year based on the continent
2017 Caf Super Cup winner
Named in Africa's Best XI in 2016, 2017 and 2018
Guiding Uganda to two successive Afcon finals

This writer is a scribe with Daily Monitor Newspaper and also a sports presenter with Radio One FM 90 in Kampala. Follow him on Twitter: @AllanDarren and his Facebook Page: Darren Allan Kyeyune


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Published: 01/11/2019